In Denmark the major cities experience population and economic growth, whereas the villages in surrounding rural areas face abandonment and decay. Despite the good intentions, today’s widespread state-funded strategic demolition projects, undertaken in the Danish rural villages, generally emphasize the fast eradication of local identity.
This lecture centers on a practice-based research project that has emerged as a critical practice of radical preservation of the rural built environment in Denmark, as an alternative to strategic demolition. This has involved agelong cooperation with rural municipalities and residents. So far, the critical practice manifested itself through six generations of fulfilled building transformations prototyped at full scale in various rural villages. Interaction with, and engagement of, local residents and were actively utilized.
The aim was to constitute temporary catalysts of a local exchange of personal memories of place. Thus, the buildings were sought preserved as part of the collective memory prior to their absence.
Mo Michelsen Stochholm Krag is an architect, educator and researcher born in Aarhus, Denmark in 1975. He is Assistant Professor at the Aarhus School of Architecture, Denmark. He holds a PhD in Architecture. He has 17 years of experience in the private sector as a building architect. He was Co-Founder of architectural office Krag de Ridder ApS in 2006. He teaches and researches in the areas of transformation of depopulating rural villages, radical preservation, and experimental practice research since 2010. He reviews new architecture at the Danish architectural trade journal “Arkitekten” since 2014.